PPA is partnering with the Fortune Society, a New York-based re-entry service organization, to evaluate the impact of the Individualized Correction Achievement Network (I-CAN) Mentoring program. The Fortune Society supports individuals with criminal justice involvement during the reentry process back into the community upon release from the New York Correction Department. Launched in 2013, I-CAN is an innovative evidence-based reentry initiative designed to reduce recidivism among incarcerated men and women. I-CAN draws on national best practices to provide individuals in custody with the tools and support needed to ensure a successful return to the community.
Established in 2017 with federal funding from the Department of Justice, the I-CAN Mentoring program is a new service provided for individuals being released from selected New York City Rikers Island correction facilities. This new service will establish an adult mentoring relationship with program participants on Rikers Island prior to being released that will continue upon release.
“The I-CAN Mentoring program is doing what few programs have done,” said Ronald Day, Associate Vice President of The Fortune Society. “It’s offering a mentoring relationship to men and women during their incarceration and continuing that relationship through the mentee’s transition. The mentors help strip out the layers of harm associated with incarceration, in order to have the mentees recognize their potential, and to have them acknowledge that they can be assets to themselves, their families, and communities,” explained Day.
PPA president Dr. Paul Elam and his team will evaluate the impact of adult mentoring on offenders using a randomized controlled trial that will measure the intermediate and long-term outcomes of I-CAN clients such as employment, housing, substance use, and recidivism rates of both mentored and non-mentored individuals. “There are only a handful of studies that have looked at the effects of mentoring on this particular adult population, so PPA is exited about contributing our findings to the body of knowledge,” said Dr. Elam.
All I-CAN participants will receive:
- Access to reentry support services such as housing, employment, mental health, substance use, and education.
- Opportunities to engage in career-based presentations, workforce initiatives, and social activities.
- A monetary incentive for program completion.
Randomly selected program participants will also be eligible to receive:
- A personally matched mentor.
- One-on-one mentoring sessions with that mentor.
- Pre- and post-release mentoring sessions.
PPA has extensive experience in developing, implementing, and evaluating re-entry services and has worked as a trusted partner with the Michigan Department of Corrections, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and the Michigan Council on Crime & Delinquency to establish evidence-based reentry efforts in Michigan.
Dr. Elam’s own work is focused largely on criminal and juvenile justice. He played a key role in the development and implementation of the Michigan Prisoner ReEntry Initiative and continues to work on reentry issues across the U.S. He currently works with the Governor’s Committee on Juvenile Justice, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and local jurisdictions to ensure that justice-involved youth are treated fairly and equitably. To find out more about PPA’s work in juvenile justice, contact Dr. Elam at 517-485-4477 or firstname.lastname@example.org.